Guess who was waiting for the moon to rise over Beverly Hills on Sunday night? Apollo XI’s moon-lander Buzz Aldrin. He and the Peninsula Hotel’s general manager Ali Kasikci hosted a Full Moon Party poolside on the hotel’s rooftop. Last year’s ditto bash was moonless when clouds covered the sky, and it looked like the moon would be covered again this year, but it made a brief appearance before clouds again KO’d the celestial body.
It was no reason to curtail conversation with Aldrin about the memorable July 20, 1969, moonwalk by Aldrin and Neil Armstrong when they left this plaque on the moon: “We came in peace for all mankind.” And only last week, the conversation was aired again about Armstrong’s landing statement: “One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” Was the letter “a” missing? Aldrin, who exited the module 30 minutes after Armstrong, told me the transmission time “and fidelity” from the moon to the earth could have hidden the “a.” Meanwhile, Aldrin laughs, “It must have been a slow day for the media.”
He’s planning a reunion next May on a cruise for 18 of the surviving 24 moonwalkers. Aldrin, who is constantly circling the globe on space travel subjects, tells me he is launching a new education program in addition to his space programs, books, lectures, etc.